Carmarthenshire could see a 2.75 per cent rise in council tax
TAX payers in Carmarthenshire could see a 2.75 per cent rise in their council tax this year.
The figure, agreed by the executive board today, will now go to full council.
Council leader Kevin Madge said he was pleased to have kept the increase below three per cent and said Carmarthenshire had one of the lowest council tax rates in West Wales.
With the 2.75 per cent increase those living in Band D properties will be charged £977 for the year when bills are sent out in April.
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Mr Madge said the rise would help to maintain jobs and keep services going at a time the council is facing a cut in real terms from central government funding.
"We are trying make sure we keep jobs and want to keep as many of our workforce in work," he said.
"We also want to keep our services going as best we can."
Before the meeting Mr Madge said: "The priority for me as council leader is to keep as many jobs in the authority as we can."
He said with the impending government cuts he could not yet rule out redundancies.
"I cannot promise that there won't be losses of jobs but when you look at Cardiff with a loss of 300 jobs, we know that we will have no where near that."
The council tax rise was originally predicted at 2.55 per cent, but councillors have decided not to charge for disabled parking, which is set to cost the authority £109,000.
Mr Madge said: "There is £109,000 for car parking charges for disabled car parking. With the changes going on with benefits, which are set to affect the disabled, we feel that these should be taken out."
At the meeting a number of growth areas were also outlined, including a £1million investment in social services in the county this year.
"We are putting the extra £1million in the budget for any new social services cases. We have not done this before and it shows the commitment of the authority," Mr Madge added.
The council is also planning to add £250,000 for waste collection and £200,000 for transport.
A final decision on the figures will be made at a full council meeting later this month.